Have You Met....? Monday (#18): Steam Powered Giraffe
I love concerts, I won't lie. Went to my first one when I was 15 years old - Depeche Mode on their "Some Great Reward" tour at the Oakland Colliseum - weird, the details that stick to your brainmeats. Well, anyway, to help foster a handoff of this affection, I had the opportunity to take my daughter to a concert. We'd been to one before - Duran Duran (yes, I'm an 80's child, cope with your disappointment, please) - but she was a fair bit younger and was more freaked out by the potent volume than anything else.
Now, I've been following Steam Powered Giraffe for a while now - being as we do travel and work in the same circles - but I've never had the chance to actually watch them perform. So when I learned they were doing a show near Seattle, and since my daughter LOVES them, it just seemed like the perfect chance.
It's difficult to describe the full SPG experience. The closest I've come is to say that they're like KISS, if KISS loved Vaudeville. The show isn't just a concert. It's a full performance. Stories, jokes, multimedia, dance numbers, costumes. They borrow on musical genres spanning more than a hundred years, all the while keeping the musical content and pop-culture referentiality accessible and enjoyable. They made me love an old Country/Western ballad to the classic unsung hero "Rex Marksley", they gave me a ballet dance to the heart-breakingly beautiful song "Turn Back the Clock", and they did in fact, get me and everyone else in the theater to sing along on the infectious "Brass Goggles". To those of you who haven't heard of these wonderful people before, I am not kidding you. Go check them out. They are amazeballs.
The band and their biomechanical cohorts even hosted a meet and greet after the show, and I had a brief moment to share my enthusiastic enjoyment of their production. They do put on a fantastic show, and made me want to grab a keytar or one of my drums and play along. To the lovely and talented Rabbit (I can't tell you how much I would pay to see you and Weird Al perform a duet on accordions), the eloquent and dashing The Spine, and the potentially malevolent (and fancy shoed) Hatchworth, let me just say this: you are fantastic, your work is deeply enjoyable, and, in all seriousness, let's do have tea sometime. We should definitely chat.